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A simsimiyya being played.

The simsimiyya (Arabic: سمسمية‎‎) is a traditional plucked lyre used in Egypt, Jordan and Yemen.

It is mostly used by Bedouins as a social instrument. In Egypt it is traditionally used to accompany a dance called bambutiyya, as well as among the musicians called suhbagiyya, in the cities of Port Said and Ismailiyya.[1]


  • Shiloah, Amnon. "The Simsimiyya: A Stringed Instrument of the Red Sea Area." Asian Music, vol. 4, no. 1, Near East-Turkestan Issue (1972), pp. 15-26.

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